Sunday, 18 March 2012

Riffault an oxidative riddle

Sancerre from Sebastien Riffault, in this particular case Akmenine 09, it’s a bruised apple flesh coloured golden, it’s far from clear. The nose is manifestly oxidative, all bruised apple notes, but yet somehow staying just on the right side of fully acetyl aldehyde. There’s a complex ripe cool climate fruit character that’s present, there are some aromatic almost, but not quite floral elements. The whole shouldn’t work, but yet on drinking the wine, it’s thrillingly good, rollercoaster acidity, the whole palette seems to be all tight muscle, even the oxidative notes, which usually loll about like love handles on a well fed belly. It just all seems to work.

What’s worse is that when you compare the Akemenine with Skeveldra one of his other cuvees the differences are so evident that it forces consideration of the question as to how the winesz can be so marked by a chemical process and yet still show much more of the terroirs from whence they came than most (if not all) other Loire Sauvignons.


Cesar Valverde said...

He has a quite a few more than two SB cuvees I think! Personally I have found the sulphured ones a little more sucessful, as well as being cheaper. These definitely play with oxidation, and for me not always to great effect, tho as you say- sometimes they sing!

Donald Edwards said...

I'm not quite sure why I wrote is such that it implies he's only got the two cuvees, I know full well he mas many more. I agree about the lightly sulphured cuvee being excellent, though I rather like taunting myself with the unsulphured ones.
(will change wording on the post)